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How do you attachment parent more than 1 child?


Forum: Attachment Parenting

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  • 2 Post By alittlelost
  • 2 Post By KMH
  • 1 Post By shen7
  • 2 Post By LuckyOne

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  #1  
March 13th, 2013, 02:15 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 2,901
I recently gave birth to dd2 and I feel overwhelmed. Today I've started feeling better, like I can nurture dd1 again while trying to take care of dd2 neverending newborn physical needs; example, Feeding every 1-2 hours, changing poopie diapers, and changing her outfits like she's a runway model (what seems like every few minutes within time constraints) because she refluxed on them and can't sit in her vomit. It's a bit overwhelming really.
This week I feel better physically and even emotionally but I'm battling with PPD which isn't too bad unless they both start crying and then I become overwhelmed and at times one crying sets off the other one. So you can imagine me trying to tend to both Sometimes I feel it's a madhouse!
So my question is: How do you attachment parent two kids?
Thankfully, this is it for DH and I but it's been a big adjustment. DD1 has adjusted to not being an only child pretty well most of the time but there are times when she wants to be number one or worse yet (for me) she actually really needs to be nurtured and her sister starts crying because she needs to be tended to. So how do I deal with this?
I've come up with a plan to just cook on the weekends and at night so I can still nurture DD1 and 2 while tending to their actual physical needs---breakfast, lunch, dinner, potty, book, play, learning time. I'm going to end up exhausted but I'm committed to my way of parenting.
I think part of my problem is, too, that I like to spoil my girls rotten. For example, DD2 is a newborn and I love holding them at this age. With DD1 I started doing this because my PPD was really bad and I just wanted to have her with me 24/7 and it just because our thing, but now I have two little ones to tend to so I can't hold DD2 all the time.....which makes me feel guilty because DD1 got to be held all the time. And I know that attachment parenting doesn't mean you're going to hold your kids all the time, but nurturing is a big part of it (to me at least) so how do I nurture both without feeling I'm neglecting the other?
Any pointers?
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  #2  
March 13th, 2013, 02:40 PM
Destiny
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 2,755
Honestly, I think it's just something you adjust to. You learn to balance the needs of your children, and it does happen.
One thing that helped me in the early days was playing catch up with my older daughter every chance I got, I know I didn't spend as much time with her as I would've liked but if I spent time with her while the baby was sleeping or with daddy it would lessen her needs while I was tending to the baby.

One big tip from me, if you get overwhelmed and need to neglect something, you can always do chores later. If you do one little thing a day it won't get too horrible, and you'll keep the time and energy you need for you and your kids, especially since you're still in the immediate postpartum.
Take your time, you will adjust and it will get better. Get outside help if you can.

Congratulations on your little girl
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  #3  
March 13th, 2013, 06:26 PM
alittlelost's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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It's going to be hard at first, but you WILL adjust. Really, the hardest thing for you right now will be not being hard on your self. and finding time to recharge and get time to yourself and get a break, especially when you're dealing with PPD (I had it really bad after all of my pregnancies, so I understand!) Attachment Parenting doesn't mean your child's needs and desires are always met the second they want. It means they are met AS SOON AS YOU ARE ABLE. That is what sends the message to them that you are there for them. Attachment Parents need to have balance, too. That means that even though you will meet your child's needs as soon as you can, your child will also learn that "as soon as you can" isn't the same as "the second they ask". You can tell your older daughter, "I want to help you right now, but I need a few minutes before I am able to." And when you make time to her, let her know you love her as much as ever, but that sometimes the baby will need you first just like sometimes she will need you first, and that you'll always do your best to help them both as soon as you are able. *hugs* Sounds like you are doing an amazing job
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  #4  
March 13th, 2013, 06:28 PM
KMH KMH is offline
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It is hard. I underestimated how hard it would be, and there were definitely lots of tears in the beginning (for all of us!). Claire was 26 months when the twins were born, so it a 3-ring circus in our house. Eventually I found a rhythm, learned some tricks, and we're doing pretty well now.

Babywearing is a MUST for me...I can get my snuggle time with babies even if I'm doing something with Claire, and it keeps everyone happier. When the babies are sleeping, Claire and I do things together. The dishes might pile up sometimes, but I learned to let stuff like that go until after the kids are in bed. While I'm feeding babies, I often play games with Claire or we read stories...she loves it, and it helps her feel like she's getting a lot of my time. Say "YES" to any offers of help. When you cook, make a double batch and freeze one for later when you are frazzled. Get away...even if it is a 10-minute walk up the street while DH is with the kids, you'll feel refreshed when you get back.

On weekends, DH and I take turns so we each get special one-on-one time with each child without the others being a distraction. I love being able to focus completely on one child, and I know that they love it, too.

Most importantly, don't be too hard on yourself. Just do your best every day. Some days your best might be taking the kids on a great adventure, having a clean house, and cooking 3 hot meals. Some days your best might be pajamas all day, pizza delivery, and barely surviving. It's all okay...hang in there
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  #5  
March 13th, 2013, 06:37 PM
KMH KMH is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LuckyOne View Post
changing her outfits like she's a runway model
That made me giggle...my youngest is a reflux baby, too, and it is amazing how many wardrobe changes we go thru in a day!

Is she taking any meds for the reflux?
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  #6  
March 13th, 2013, 07:28 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 6,057
Quote:
Originally Posted by alittlelost View Post
It's going to be hard at first, but you WILL adjust. Really, the hardest thing for you right now will be not being hard on your self. and finding time to recharge and get time to yourself and get a break, especially when you're dealing with PPD (I had it really bad after all of my pregnancies, so I understand!) Attachment Parenting doesn't mean your child's needs and desires are always met the second they want. It means they are met AS SOON AS YOU ARE ABLE. That is what sends the message to them that you are there for them. Attachment Parents need to have balance, too. That means that even though you will meet your child's needs as soon as you can, your child will also learn that "as soon as you can" isn't the same as "the second they ask". You can tell your older daughter, "I want to help you right now, but I need a few minutes before I am able to." And when you make time to her, let her know you love her as much as ever, but that sometimes the baby will need you first just like sometimes she will need you first, and that you'll always do your best to help them both as soon as you are able. *hugs* Sounds like you are doing an amazing job
This resonates a lot with me. I strongly feel it is good for kids to learn that they are not the center of the universe and not to expect any want or need to be met instantly... AND to learn the secure trust that their mom and dad and other family/caregivers love them and are doing their best to take care of them and make sure they are safe and happy. I believe they can learn both. I am not supermom and I don't want my kids to think I am supermom.

I am just pregnant with #2 but it has already started. I weaned my DD, don't pick her up a lot anymore, etc, for my own comfort with my personal pregnancy symptoms. Daddy has taken over nighttime parenting. But I don't feel at all like I am neglecting her. Gaining a sibling will be a big transition for her but life is about transformation. I have learned new ways to connect with her as she grows. She is talking more so I try to understand her toddlerspeak, we retell stories of exciting things we did that day or in the past, we joke and laugh together, we cuddle on the couch.

I hope that helps a little. The postpartum phase you are in right now must be totally overwhelming and I hope you are getting lots of support. Hugs!!!!!!
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  #7  
March 13th, 2013, 11:33 PM
KiwiMommy's Avatar Ashlynn's Mama
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: New England
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I struggle. I will admit that. I try my best though and try to get through each day without regrets. Does that happen every day? No. But I'm getting better and working through it. It's sort of a learned thing. There's no real answer as far as I have figured out. You do your best and hope for the best..lol. I am more AP to Matthew as opposed to Ash, but we are going through a really tough time with her right now too and it's probably my fault since I can't spend as much time with her. I try to put aside time every day for her though and offer snuggles whenever I can. Her brother is very very high needs, so it's a lot of work.
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  #8  
March 14th, 2013, 07:20 AM
ashj_1218's Avatar Hiya!
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 11,641
The others ladies said pretty much everything I was going to say!

Babywearing!! It will change your life. You can get cuddles with DD2 and still meet DD1s needs and wants. I would have been a mess without it.

And it's really important to remember that the best you can is perfectly fine. Your daughters will be healthy, happy, and well-attached even if some days feel overwhelming and like "failures" in the AP realm. I, too, think its important for kids to sometimes know you can't meet the need instantaneously. It's a hard lesson and even harder when it comes at the same time as a new sibling. But your older daughter will be fine and will learn to wait for a couple minutes for her cuddles, drink, or game.

And I love the idea of spending time with each one independently. It's hard, especially in the beginning. But even small blocks of time go a long way. Liam has music class that me and him do on Tuesday nights and he gets mt undivided attention for an hour that evening. Kieran gets it when Liam goes to "school" on Tuesday mornings. And I alternate who I take on evening errands, to give them each time with just me and just DH.

If you manage to change everyone's diaper, get all to the potty, and feed everyone...you are doing fine It will balance out in a few months. But be easy on yourself in the meantime. And ask for help...whenever you can.
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  #9  
March 24th, 2013, 02:42 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 2,901
Thank you so much for your replies. I cooked one night like it was the end of the world and I was able to spend several days focusing on my girls and not the chores. Then I took another night and caught up on laundry. I'm glad I posted about this, I don't feel as overwhelmed all the time.
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